Subject to Change due to COVID-19
The current ESF Catalog is online only, and is updated as needed throughout the year. To view the version officially associated with a particular year of entry to the College, please refer to the appropriate catalog of record.
**Please note that certain classes are permitted to charge course fees that SUNY has approved. Please refer to the detailed list to see if a class you are interested in has a mandatory fee associated with it, and the amount of the fee. For a detailed listing, click here.
ESF Course Descriptions
ESF Courses by Prefix
Scroll down to view after selecting:
- APMApplied Mathematics
- BPEBioprocess Engineering
- CMEConstruction Management Engineering
- EFBEnvironmental and Forest Biology
- EHSEnvironmental Health
- ENSEnvironmental Science
- EREEnvironmental Resources Engineering
- ESTEnvironmental Studies
- EWPEnvironmental Writing Program
- FORForestry (Resources Management)
- FTCForest Technology
- GNEGeneral Engineering
- LSALandscape Architecture
- PSEPaper Science and Engineering
- RMSRenewable Materials Science
- SRESustainable Renewable Energy
- SUSSustainability Management
Catalog and Registrar Resources
NOTE: The catalog is updated as changes become official. For the program requirements that apply to you, see the catalog of record for your entering year.
- Academic Catalog (and catalogs of record)
Introductory Research Problem
FTC 101 Trigonometry for Natural Resource Technicians (3)
Forty hours of lecture and sixteen hours of recitation conducted over a four-week period. A review of selected geometry and algebra topics, and an introduction to trigonometry and its applications. Emphasis on pythagorean theorem, quadratic equations, rectangular coordinate systems, right triangle trigonometry, oblique triangle trigonometry, the Law of Sines, the Law of Cosines and the graphing of trigonometric functions. Graphic calculator required. Summer.
FTC 105 Tree and Forest Biology (4)
A four-week summer program having 45 hours of lecture and 45 hours of lab. An introduction to the biology of trees and the diversity of animal life commonly found in forests. Field labs concentrate on biological relationships in Adirondack forests. Summer.
FTC 200 Dendrology (3)
Thirty eight hours of lecture, and forty hours of field laboratory. Characteristics, distribution, and uses of tree species in North America. Identifying plant species using common and scientific names, from leaf, twig, fruit, or bark samples. Habitats, species associates, and succession of plants, including some invasive species. Fall.
FTC 202 Introduction to Surveying (3)
Twenty eight hours of lecture and 72 hours of laboratory and field exercises. The course is an introduction to the theory and practice of plane surveying. Emphasis is on developing individual skills and techniques through small crew projects where it is necessary to handle typical surveying equipment in actual field situations. Lecture topics include the theory of measurements and errors, field record keeping procedures, mathematics for plane surveying, introduction to field problems, introduction to map use and preparation, concepts of land tenure systems and basic computer aided drafting. Students tour the various offices found at the County courthouse and participate in a research exercise. Field projects include traversing using common forester's and surveyor's tools and instruments, mapping including field and office procedure, and proficiency projects in handling various surveying instruments. Fall.
FTC 204 Introduction to Natural Resources Measurements (4)
Forty-five hours of lecture and sixty hours of field/laboratory. A study of the tools and techniques used to measure primary forest products and inventory and/or measure natural resources, such as timber, water, biomass, carbon stocks, wildlife habitat, recreation use and impact, and plant diversity. Professional presentation of forest inventory data in the form of technical reports. Basic forest sampling methods are used and compared, and associated statistical methods are learned and applied. Fall.
FTC 205 Computer Aided Drafting and Design 1 (2)
Eighteen hours of lecture and 36 hours of laboratory time. An introductory course in computer aided drafting. Emphasis is on developing individual skills and techniques for making professional quality drawings and maps. Topics include the drawing, editing, layer management, dimensioning, survey computations, data reduction, contouring and Geographic Information Systems. Fall. Prerequisite(s): FTC 202 - Introduction to Surveying
FTC 206 Forest Ecology (4)
Fifty-one hours of lecture and fifty-six hours of laboratory and field. Study of interactions between forest vegetation and the environment. Considers how sunlight, moisture, soils and climate impact species presence, composition and growth. Human dimension of forest ecology, including critical thinking and evaluation of environmental issues. Fall.
FTC 207 Communications and Safety (3)
Twenty six hours lecture and fifty eight hours laboratory provides students with technical competence. Students develop study skills, handwriting skills, computer skills and communication skills including how to use library services. A resume and cover letter will be prepared for use in the job search process. Students receive training on the proper use and maintenance of forest hand tools and chainsaws. Students receive advanced training in the use and maintenance of chainsaws, and skidding equipment. First Aid and CPR/AED are covered as well as wilderness first aid. Prepares students for living in remote areas. Fall
FTC 208 Remote Sensing and GIS Technology (3)
Thirty hours of lecture and forty-five hours of laboratory. This course is an introduction to the use of remote sensing and geographic information systems in the field of natural resources. Students practice interpretation of aerial photographs and digital imagery to measure horizontal distances and azimuths and calculate ground area. Acquisition, creation and basic analysis of spatial data are also emphasized. Fall.
FTC 209 Timber Harvesting (2)
Eighteen hours of lecture and thirty six hours of laboratory or field instruction. Student learns basic harvesting methods with northeastern United States emphasis and its relationship to other forest uses. Student understand the role of best management practices in timber harvesting. A technical competence in timber sale contract administration and basic timber appraisal is gained. Fall. Co-requisite(s): FTC 204, FTC 207.
FTC 210 Wildlife Techniques 1 (1)
Eight hours of lecture and eighteen hours field and laboratory time. Part 1 of an introduction to standard methods and techniques for surveying, measuring, and monitoring wildlife populations are discussed, demonstrated, and practiced. Identification of mammals and birds by sight and sound. Fall. Prerequisites: FTC 200, FTC 202, and FTC 204.
FTC 211 Silviculture (3)
Thirty hours lecture and seventy five hours field lab. Regeneration and tending of forest stands. Physical and chemical treatments used for growing forests in the northeastern states. Introduction to silviculture in the southern and western states. Methods for quantifying and predicting forest growth. Marking timber stands for harvesting. Establishing new stands. Spring. Prerequisites: FTC 200, FTC 204, and FTC 206.
FTC 212 Adirondack Cultural Ecology (1)
Twenty two hours of lecture and twenty eight hours of field laboratory. Development of the Adirondack Park as influenced by the exploitation and eventual conservation of the region's natural resources. An historical review and contemporary assessment of the political, economic, and sociologic issues that define and influence Adirondack culture. Guest speakers, public meeting attendance, and field trips within the Park reinforce cultural history and emphasize the role of individuals, organizations, and agencies in managing the unique blend of public and private lands that comprise the Park. Spring.
FTC 213 Forest Inventory Practicum (2)
Six hours of lecture and sixty four hours of field/laboratory. A practical field problem requiring students to use professional methods of collecting, analyzing, and presenting forest inventory data. Inventory of the timber/biomass resource and the development of a forest type map are emphasized. Spring. Prerequisites: FTC 200, FTC 202, FTC 204, and FTC 208.
FTC 214 Leadership and Organizational Performance (2)
Twenty-two hours of lecture and twenty-four hours of laboratory time. Provides students with technical competence and decision-making abilities. Students learn about company and agency organization; the selection, placement, training, and evaluation of workers; managing crews and the techniques of foremanship; and human relations in the workplace, with emphasis on the special personnel problems of the forest and surveying industries. Spring. Prerequisite(s): FTC 207 Communications and Safety
FTC 217 Wildland Firefighting and Ecology (2)
Twenty-five hours of lecture and sixteen hours of laboratory and field. An introduction to fire science. Learn basic principles of fire ecology, behavior, danger rating and control. Practical experience conducting a prescribed burn. Spring. Prerequisite(s): FTC 200, FTC 204, FTC 206, FTC 210.
FTC 219 Introduction to Forest Recreation (1)
Fourteen hours of lecture and twenty hours field and laboratory time. A study of forest-recreation resources, their importance to humans, and of the basic history, laws and principles underlying forest-recreation management in the United States. The technical aspects of recreation management are emphasized, as is the study of public-land management, including wilderness. Spring. Pre-requisites: FTC 207.
FTC 221 Natural Resources Management (3)
Thirty-five hours of lecture and thirty hours of laboratory and field. Addresses common issues in organizing a forest property to meet stakeholder goals. Techniques of growth and resource measurement, monitoring, and evaluation are emphasized. Examples and case studies of forest management and production activities are presented. A final project involves the application of knowledge accumulated at the ESF Ranger School in a management plan for an assigned forest property. Spring. Prerequisites: FTC 204, FTC 206 and FTC 208.
FTC 225 Timber Transportation and Utilization (2)
Twenty-two lecture hours and thirty laboratory hours. Students gain knowledge of forest road maintenance. Differences in wood structure of various tree species are studied in the laboratory, students learn how to identify tree species by wood characteristics. Spring. Prerequisite(s): FTC 200, FTC 206, FTC 207
FTC 234 Wildlife Conservation (3)
Thirty-eight hours of lecture and twenty hours field and laboratory time. An introduction to the history and evolution of wildlife-related policies and laws, and to the biological, ecological, economical and sociological principles underlying wildlife management and conservation efforts in the United States. Terrestrial vertebrate animals serve as the basis of discussions and case studies. Students improve their communication skills by presenting papers and speeches on wildlife-related topics. Spring. Prerequisite: FTC 206.
FTC 236 Environmental Interpretation Principles and Techniques (3)
Thirty three hours of lecture and thirty six hours field and laboratory time. Introduction to the history, theory and basic personal and non-personal methods of environmental interpretation. Exploration of the relationship between interpretation and nature recreation and the use of interpretation programs to informally educate the public about environmental and natural resource issues. Principles of interpretation are emphasized and applied to course projects. Students deepen understanding of course material and improve their communication skills by preparing and presenting both personal and non-personal interpretive programs. Spring. Pre-requisites: FTC 200, FTC 202, FTC 204, and FTC 206
FTC 237 Introduction to Water and Soil Resources (4)
Forty-eight hours of lecture and forty hours of laboratory and field exercises. Introduction to watershed ecology and soil science. Interactions among upland, riparian, lacustrine and wetland systems, including the hydrologic cycle, water balance equation and water quality assessments. Study and measurement of soil physical, chemical and biological characteristics and processes. Recognize soil and water resource management and protection issues associated with multiple uses of forest lands. Spring. Prerequisites: FTC 202, FTC 206, and FTC 208.
FTC 238 Forest Insects and Disease (3)
Thirty-five hours of lecture and twenty-six hours of laboratory and field. An introduction to forest insects and diseases. Explore ecological roles and identify selected insects and pathogens based on morphology, signs and symptoms. Discuss integrated pest management and other control measures. Spring. Prerequisites: FTC 200, and FTC 206.
FTC 239 GIS Practicum (1)
Six hours of lecture and twenty-eight hours of laboratory. Development of an independent project utilizing Geographic Information Systems, including acquisition, manipulation, and creation of geospatial data. Plan, conduct, and present a geospatial analysis project on a topic of choice within field of study. Spring. Prerequisites: FTC 202, and FTC 208.
FTC 240 Wildlife Techniques 2 (1)
Ten hours of lecture and eighteen hours field and laboratory time. Part 2 of an introduction to standard methods and techniques for surveying, measuring, and monitoring wildlife populations are discussed, demonstrated, and practiced. Identification of birds, amphibians, and reptiles by sight and sound. Spring. Prerequisite(s): FTC 200 (Dendrology), FTC 202 (Introduction to Surveying), FTC 204 (Introduction to Natural Resources Measurements), and FTC 210 (Wildlife Techniques 1)
FTC 251 Advanced Surveying Measurements and Computations (4)
Thirty hours of lecture and eighty-five hours of field and laboratory time. Advanced survey measurements and computational techniques including traverse calculations, rectangular coordinates, statistical analysis of surveying data, state plane coordinates, meridian determination, partition of land, trigonometric leveling and horizontal control are explored. Students will make the necessary surveying measurements in the field and be expected to complete various surveying measurements using a calculator and computer. Spring. Prerequisite: FTC 202. Co-requisite: FTC 257.
FTC 253 Survey Law (3)
Thirty five hours of lecture and 30 hours of laboratory time. The course is a study of courthouse real property research, property boundary determination by various methods, case and statute law as it relates to real property and land surveying, legal research and the liability and professionalism of the practicing land surveyor. Spring. Prerequisite: FTC 202.
FTC 255 Boundary Surveying (3)
Thirty hours of lecture and forty-five hours of field and laboratory time. A study of the procedures necessary to conduct a retracement survey including preliminary office procedures, field practices, and preparation of final survey documents. Students will complete a retracement survey and use the compiled data in a mock trial. Spring. Prerequisite: FTC 202. Co-requisite: FTC 253.
FTC 256 Subdivision Surveys (2)
Twenty hours of lecture and 30 hours of laboratory time. An introduction to the preparation of a multi-lot subdivision of a parcel of real estate. Development of a subdivision in relation to topography, zoning requirements, utility services, existing and proposed roads or streets and client requests. Students learn to design minor storm drain facilities in relation to the subdivisions. The student will incorporate all of the above while using survey software. Spring. Prerequisite: FTC 202. Co-requisite: FTC 259.
FTC 257 Construction and Topographic Surveys (3)
Twenty-five hours lecture and sixty hours field and laboratory. A study of the various methods and techniques used to perform construction and topographic surveys and develop topographic maps. Theory, mathematics, and layout of circular, spiral and vertical curves. Layout of various construction projects including buildings, roads, pipelines and bridges will be discussed. Earthwork, staking and cross-section calculations will also be covered. Students complete a topographic mapping project and develop maps using appropriate surveying and mapping software. Spring. Co-requisites: FTC 252 and FTC 259.
FTC 259 Computer Aided Drafting and Design II (2)
Eighteen hours of lecture and seventy hours of laboratory time. An additional course in computer aided drafting and design. Emphasis is on developing individual skills and techniques for making professional quality drawings, maps and plats. Topics include the drawing, editing, layer management, dimensioning, survey computations, data reduction, surface modelling and GIS. Spring. Prerequisite(s): FTC 202 - Introduction to Surveying, FTC 205 Computer aided Drafting and Design I.
FTC 298 Independent Study in Forest Technology (1 - 6)
Independent study in forest technology to apply, enhance or supplement forest technology or related natural resource education. Objectives and scope of the project are negotiated in a learning contract between the student and instructor(s), with course admission based on permission of the instructor(s). Limited to those who have attended the complete regular SFT program, or those who have graduated from another forest technology program or a related natural resource program, or to students enrolled in any ESF program other than SFT. A maximum of six credit hours may be taken by any student in total. Semesters as arranged. Fall, Spring or Summer.
FTC 298 Independent Study in Forest Technology (1 - 6)
Independent study in forest technology to apply, enhance or supplement forest technology or related natural resource education. Objectives and scope of the project are negotiated in a learning contract between the student and instructor(s), with course admission based on permission of the instructor(s). Limited to those who have attended the complete regular SFT program, or those who have graduated from another forest technology program or a related natural resource program, or to students enrolled in any ESF program other than SFT. A maximum of six credit hours may be taken by any student in total. Students shall report their activities to their instructor on a weekly basis for the duration of the course. Semesters as arranged. Fall, Spring or Summer.
Course Numbering System
100-499: Undergraduate courses for which no graduate credit may be given.
500-599: Graduate courses designed expressly for areas of specialization in post-baccalaureate programs. Qualified undergraduate students may enroll by permission of the instructor.
600-699: Graduate courses designed expressly for advanced levels of specialization. Undergraduate students with a cumulative grade point average of 3.000 or better may enroll in these courses with an approved petition.
700-999: Advanced graduate level courses for which no undergraduate students may register. Shared resources courses, designated as 400/500 or 400/600, are designed when the topic coverage of both courses is the same. Separate course syllabuses are developed expressly differentiating the requirements and evaluative criteria between the undergraduate course and the graduate course. No type of cross-listing may be offered unless approved by the ESF faculty.